My arrival and hostel search in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia.

I was traveling with 3 new friends that I met while getting from Kota Kinabalu Airport to the city center.

One of them was surprised, how I seemed to know my way around Kota Kinabalu even though it was my first time visiting the city.

Before the trip, I OC-ied over planning my itinerary and plotting my destinations in Google Maps. When I arrived at KK City Center, I felt a strange familiarity with it.

KK City Center was small and compact. Most places were easily reached by foot.

Each of us already had hostels in mind and mine was the furthest away. Since we liked the idea of having dinner together on the first night of our trip, we decided to accompany each other checking in at our respective hostel rooms.

Trip Date — March 2012

Itinerary Notes & Tips

Kota Kinabalu Hostel Search

First up was Masada Backpacker, a mid-market hostel located along Jalan Masjid Lama. Their dorms were priced at RM35 per person per night. Not to bad considering the place seemed spiffy and clean.

The second hostel we visited was Akinabalu Youth Hostel located along Jalan Gaya, They had a spacious lounge. Unfortunately, their cheap RM20 dorm beds were already fully booked.

Last was my choice, Lucy’s Homestay. I got interested about this hostel because of positive reviews I read online. Too bad Lucy’s Homestay was also fully booked.

Borneo Backpackers

So we went to my other choice, Borneo Backpackers located along Jalan Gaya. Borneo Backpackers was one of the cheapest hostels in Kota Kinabalu.

I checked in at their RM25 dorm on my first night and then transferred to the cheaper RM20 dorm. For their cheap prices, Borneo Backpackers was alright. They even had free WIFI and breakfast (simple toast, jam, and coffee).

Borneo Backpackers had an excellent central location, walking distance to major landmarks within the city center. In any case, there were a lot of cheap backpacker hostels in the area surrounding Borneo Backpackers.